Department of
Internal Medicine at Highland Hospital
A member of Alameda Health System

Quality Improvement

QI Mission

Participation in and understanding Quality Improvement and Patient Safety is an important and necessary part of any physicians’ career. We expect our residents to become lifelong learners and to become stewards of safe, effective, high value, and patient centered care. The QI/PS curriculum goals are to teach internal medicine residents concepts in patient safety, principles of systems analysis of adverse events, provide tools for systems innovation, provide skills for measurement, and practice performing quality improvement. Through our curriculum, we hope to develop a culture of safety and quality. By the end of their internal medicine residency, residents should be able to:

  • Apply appropriate quality and safety terminology when describing analysis of adverse events
  • Analyze an adverse event occurring in a hospitalized or ambulatory patient and distinguish between active (individual) and latent (systems) causes of adverse events
  • Critically reflect on adverse events cases and make appropriate recommendations for action planning and systems change
  • Analyze a quality problem by identifying a quality gap, conducting a basic process analysis, proposing a viable solution, and testing the solution using the Model for Improvement (Plan Do Study Act (PDSA) cycles)
  • Participate in quality improvement and patient safety initiatives with project participation resulting in at least one abstract, oral presentation, or publication
  • Incorporate Culture of Safety into their daily work


QI Curriculum

We are very proud of our QI/PS curriculum.  Our curriculum is taught using various methods which include:

  • Didactics - lectures on prioritizing projects, team building and stake holder importance, improvement methodology, process mapping, and understanding data plan and analysis
  • E-learning through the IHI modules on Patients Safety and Quality Improvement
  • Faculty mentor supervising group QI projects in both the ambulatory and inpatient setting
  • M&M conference emphasizing patient safety concepts
  • QI forum which allows residents to share current process improvement work
  • Faculty supervision of residents on practice in analysis of errors using the Health Care Matrix
  • Opportunities of expanding QI knowledge, skills, and attitudes by choosing an elective in QI

Current Projects

  • Improving compliance with VTE prophylaxis in our inpatient medicine/surgery floors
  • Developing a robust safety culture by encouraging error reporting
  • Improving communication amongst inpatient services with subspecialty service lines
  • Improving compliance with CHF order sets with the goal of improving core measure compliance
  • Decreasing the length of stay in the SDU by setting triggers